केहि गर्नुपर्यो


हाम्रो राजनीति र दिनचर्या बढो बेरङ्गी भयो हेर्नुस्, केहि रमाइलो नगरी भएन । चट्ट माइतीघर मण्डलामा जम्मा हुने । महिला, पुरुष सबै । एकदम समावेशी । अनि देखाइदिने ।

Picture: boreme.com

Picture: boreme.com

६ महिनामा संविधान बन्ला ?

बन्दैन । सरकारै ६ महिना चल्ने हो कि हैन, कसरी संविधान आउँछ ? यो सरकार अब ढल्छ ।

हैन भारतले खोजेको चाहिँ के हो ? देश टुक्रिन्छ कि क्या हो ?

बत्ति छैन, ग्यास छैन, कत्ति राजनीतिको कुरा गर्नु यार ?

अब आन्दोलन गर्नुपर्छ, अनि ग्यास पाइन्छ ।

आन्दोलनले ग्यास पाइने भए त भैहाल्थ्यो नि । क्रान्ति नै गर्नुपर्छ, अनि बल्ल ग्यास पाइन्छ ।

हैन, जति क्रान्ति गरेपनि नेतृत्व भएन भने काम छैन, नेतृत्व विकास गर्नुपर्छ ।

धत्, नेतृत्वले कहाँ हुन्छ ? नियत चाहिन्छ नियत- असल नियत भएन भने जे गरेपनि ग्यास पाइँदैन ।

यस्ता नियत, नेतृत्वले केहि हुँदैन हेर । त्याग गर्नुपर्छ । सबैले त्याग गरे पो देश बन्छ । सबैलाई खानै परेको छ । यस्ता लोभीहरु भएको देशमा कसरी ग्यास पाइन्छ ?

सकारात्मक सोच्न सक्नुपर्यो नि – अनि पो ग्यास पाइन्छ ।

हाम्रो राजनीति बढो बेरङ्गी भयो हेर्नुस् । जहिले हेर्यो उहि कुरा छ । टिभीमा, पत्रिकामा, चियापसलमा । कसैलाई दिक्क पनि लाग्दैन कि के हो ?‍ के गर्ने होला त ? फुटबल खेल्न जाऔँ भन्यो । साथी भन्छ- कहाँ फुटबल खेल्नु ? राज्यको पूनर्संरचना नगरी फुटबल खेल्नु हुँदैन । घुम्न जाऔँ न त, रमाइलो हुन्छ, फ्रेस हुन्छ । हुँदैन, यस्तो विभेदकारी राज्यलाई सहयोग गर्नु हुँदैन, कहाँ घुम्न जानु ? संघर्ष गर्ने बेला छ । सबैलाई आन्दोलित गर्नुपर्छ । जनता नजागेसम्म अब केहि हुन्न यो देशमा । जनता उठाउनुपर्छ ।

जनताको अरु केहि कामै छैन ? खेल्न, मनोरञ्जन गर्न, घुम्न, पैसा कमाउन, पैसा उँडाउन, केहि गर्न नदिएपछि अरु कामै के हुनु ? दिनरात त्यहि समाचार हेर्यो, राजनीति भन्यो । कहिले माथिबाट संविधान खस्ला र खाऔँला भनेर मुख आँ गरेर बसिएको छ । मुखमा संविधान परेपछि रमाइलो गर्न पाइन्छ कि ? कि फेरी संघर्ष गर्नुपर्ने हो ? हत्तेरी कस्तो गाह्रो ।

राजनीति यस्तो बेरङ्गी भयो भने मुश्किल हुन्छ । के हुन्छ, भन्न सकिन्न । बर्षौँदेखि अर्थतन्त्र बिजोग भएर ग्रीसका जनता आजित भएका थिए । राजनीति बेरङ्गी भएको थियो । कोहि नपाएर एकथरी अतिवादीहरु पनि संलग्न भएको गठबन्धनलाई चुनाव जिताएका छन् । विकल्प नभएपछि के गर्नु ? २-४ वर्षमा यिनलाई बेकार चुनिएछ भन्ने भान पर्छ । फेरी अर्को दिक्दारीले जरा गाड्छ । अर्थतन्त्र झन् डामाडोल हुनसक्छ । त्यस्तै बेरङ्गी र डामाडोल हुँदा जर्मनीमा पनि हिटलरले चुनाव जितेका थिए । के गरुन् त जनताले ?

नेपालमा अलि अचम्म छ । कुरा बिग्रिरहन्छ, कहिल्यै बनेजस्तो लाग्दैन । तर बिग्रेपनि पनि ठिक्क ठिक्क मात्र बिग्रने क्या । डामाडोलै नहुने कहिल्यै । अथवा जति भए पनि हामीलाई डामाडोल नै नलाग्ने । “चलिहाल्छ नि” । डामाडोल नै भए एकथरीले भनेजस्तो क्रान्ति हुन्थ्यो कि ? सत्ताको जग पुरै हल्लिएर “जनताको सत्ता” आउँथ्यो कि ?

तर यस्तो बेरङ्गी र दिक्दारी भैरह्यो भने जे पनि हुनसक्छ । पहिला पो राजा थिए, केहि कुरा बिग्रिए, राजा आऊ देश बचाउ भन्न पाइने । फेरी राजाले कुरा बिगार्थे, राजा जाऊ, हामी नै गर्छौँ भन्न पाइने । अहिले कसलाई बोलाउने ? बोलाउन त विदेशीलाई बोलाइरहेका छन्, तर त्यसरी होला त ? विदेशीले गरे पनि फेरी यिनै नेताहरुबाटै काम गराउने हो । आफ्नै फाइदा हुने काम गर्ने हो । त्यो झन् नराम्रो । त्यसैले लोकतान्त्रिक गणतन्त्रात्मक समाधान कस्तो हुन्छ त ? सोचौँ ।

राष्ट्रिय स्तरमै अलि रमाइलो केहि हुनुपर्यो । अलिकता निराशा हटाउने, हाँसो लाग्ने केहि गर्नुपर्यो । घुम्न जाऔँ, फुटबल खेलौँ, चिप्लेटी खेलौँ, गोता मारौँ, जस्तो लाग्नुपर्यो । हामी केहि प्रस्ताव गर्न चाहन्छौँ ।

बेला बेलामा scandal मच्चाउनु पर्यो । scandal मच्चाउनेहरुलाई समाचारमा प्रमुखताका साथ स्थान दिनुपर्यो । अहिलेजस्तो बेसुरका र व्यक्तगित बेइज्जती (विशेषगरी महिलाको) गर्ने समाचार हैन । अलि कलात्मक, अलि रसिलो, अलि रमाइलो, अलि class भएको, तर एकदम scandalous । केहि नगर्ने झुर राजनीतिकहरुलाई केहि गर्न उक्साउनु पर्यो । केहि रमाइलो गर, अनि बल्ल तिम्रो फोटो छाप्छौँ भन्नुपर्यो । नेपाली सिने-नगरी पनि सनसनी विहिन छ । त्यहि राजनीति, समाचार, विचारकै प्रभाव त होला नि ? अन्त सिने-नगरीले मनग्ये सनसनी मच्चाइरहेको हुन्छ, मान्छेको मन बहलाउन सजिलो । कहिले के भिडियो निस्कन्छ, कहिले को मातेर के बितण्डा मच्चाउँछ, कहिले को जेल पर्छ, कहिले कसले पर्दामा दिन नहुने दृश्य दिन्छ, तथानाम बोल्छ । कति गम्भीर हुनु क्या ? क्रिकेट एउटा छ मन बहलाउने । तर यस्तो अग्रगामी देशका हामीलाई त्यति मात्रै ?

छ्या, कस्तो लाजमर्दो । भेराइटै नै छैन । गणतन्त्रमा यस्तो अपमान सह्य हुनै सक्दैन । हामीलाई के सोचेको ? नारा नै बनाईदिउँ: नेपाली जनता के माग्छ, हाम्लाई scandal कम भो भन्छ ! संघर्ष गरौँ ।

राजनीतिक रिपोर्टरहरुलाई बिदा दिएर एकथान पापाराजीहरु नियुक्त गर्नुपर्यो । पत्रिकाले, अनलाइनहरुले । मनोरञ्जनको नाममा त्यहि यौटो संविधानसभा र हाँसउठ्दा विचार र समाचार मात्रै ? पेज १ देखि पुछारसम्म । कस्तो बोरिङ्, हरे । समाचारबाट विचार छुट्याउन नसकिने । विचारबाट ठट्टा छुट्याउन नसकिने । जोक नै गर्ने भए जोकरहरुलाई अलि ठाउँ दिऔँ न बरु । रमाइलो गर्ने भए खुलेरै गरौँ । के यो ल्याङ्ल्याङ् ।

राजनीति मै ध्यान दिने हो भने पनि यो राजनीतिलाई निकास दिन यौटा नेपाली Sarah Palin वा बराबरको पुरुष नेता चाइयो । शब्दजाल,कार्यनीति-रणनीतिको रनभुल्ल र समाचारका निरसता सकिन्थे कि ? इटलीमा अलि अगाडी ग्रीसमा जस्तै जोकरलाई चुनावमा भारी मत दिएका थिए जनताले । तानाशाह, फटाहले दिक्दारीको भोट खोस्नुभन्दा त बरु जोकरले नै खोसेको राम्रो नि, हैन ?

आन्दोलन-विरोधमा पनि नविनता र श्रृजनशिलता खट्केको छ । सधैँ नारा,जुलुस,ढुङ्गा मुडा- दिक्कै भैयो । अब माइतीघर मण्डलामा mooning गर्ने चलन चलोस् न । चट्ट माइतीघरमा जम्मा हुने । महिला, पुरुष, सबै । एकदम समावेशी । बिहान बिहान अफिस जाँदै गरेका मन्त्री, प्रधानमन्त्री र अरु ठुला भनाउँदाहरुलाई मनोहर दृष्यको अवसर दिने । यस्तो पो विरोध । अनि पो दवाव पर्ला । हेर्ने मानिसहरुलाई पनि रमाइलो । बाटो पनि जाम नहुने । किन कसैले यस्तो काइदा नसोचेको होला ? देश साँच्चै अग्रगामी हो भने आँट गरौँ न । ल, कोहि छ ?

Ushaft explains: Nepal’s Political Crisis (2015)


We don’t believe that the controversy is about federalism or providing more rights to the people. We’d be happy if it were so.

Here is an important distinction for people who view Nepal from eyes trained elsewhere, where it’s easy to draw lines in country as a “Muslim North” and “Christian South”.

Vandalism inside CA by Maoist lawmakers (picture:dainiknepal.com)

Vandalism inside CA by Maoist lawmakers (picture:dainiknepal.com)

During the elections last year, we published updates that aimed to reach people who are ill-informed about Nepal’s situation because of relying too much on the English language commentary coming out of Nepal and from Nepal’s English-language experts. A similar situation has ensued from the controversies surrounding Nepal’s constitution writing efforts. Like last time, here are the updates you need to save yourself from embarrassment that will result from relying on the aforementioned sources. These are not just our views, but a distillation of news, and different opinions in Nepal right now.

Seven questions to understand Nepal’s latest crisis with Constituent Assembly

1. What is the Constituent Assembly (CA)?
The second Constituent Assembly (CA II) was elected through popular mandate last year. The first one (CA I) failed at its job after its 4-year tenure ran out. The first CA was elected following popular street protests of 2006 that forced the King out of power. It also paved way for the warring Maoist rebels to join mainstream politics. They had been waging a bloody war against the state and their main demand was a CA election. The Maoists and political parties from the parliament jointly started street protests after the King had dissolved parliament and taken power a few years earlier. The parliament was a result of street protests further back in time- 1990, which ended almost 30 years of King’s direct-rule that banned political parties and several democratic rights.

2. What is the position of Maoist party today?
We have written previously about CA I elections, which under dubious circumstances enabled the Maoists to emerge as the single largest party. They were in power for most of the time after the CA I elections. Because of several misadventures while in power, and the failure to lead the constitution writing process, they were reduced to the 3rd largest party in the CA II elections. Not only did they try to attack religious institutions, influence the army, foment inter-cultural discord, muzzle state funds in the name of peace process, backtrack democratic rights, they also tried to introduce provisions in the constitution that would help their long-stated goal of state-capture through the use of violence and force. Disrespect for basic rights like freedom of expression was in display, judicial process against grave war crimes were haughtily challenged and senior Maoist leaders always carried an expression that seemed to say “I can do anything to you- don’t dare challenge me.” The video footage of Baburam Bhattarai while he was announcing elections can be seen today to understand what we mean here. Some of their demands were: the creation of federal provinces on the basis of what is called the “single-ethnic identity” (more on that later), a legal preference to people of certain ethnicities over others inside such provinces, a directly elected president, a ban on parties that disagreed the above views, limit on property rights, a judiciary under the control of parliament, and so on. While declaring elections, the ruling coalition categorically said that “we could not include these provisions in the constitution because we didn’t have a two-thirds majority in the current assembly- please vote us this time so we get the required number in the next assembly.”

3. Who are the Madheshi Morcha (coalition)?
The political partners of Maoists partners were/are the regional parties from Southern plains of the east and central Nepal (their presence in Western plains is minimal)- called Madheshi Morcha (MM). This Morcha (coalition) emerged from the Madhesh uprising immediately after the peace process began. The uprising began as a violent opposition against the Maoists, but soon took the form of a political alliance demanding greater political autonomy for the Madheshi people (which is not a homogenous group of single peoples, but a very diverse group- ranging from Nepal’s most privileged group to the poorest- more on that later- living in Southern Nepal, who are ethnically and culturally different from the people of the hills and mountains). The demand of that uprising was a “single Madhesh province” in the South, stretching from the east to the west of the country. The prime minister of the time, Girija Koirala remarked that India was behind the uprising, suggesting that India wanted to check the growing influence of Maoists in Madhesh by cobbling together a political force there. While it could have been partially true, the grievances of Madheshi people against an exclusive state-apparatus that had been in Kathmandu for many years was also real. Many prominent Madheshi leaders from Koirala’s and other big parties defected to join the Madheshi coalition. Amidst a lot of opposition and pressed by the security situation in the South as well as the urgency to hold elections for CA I, the government agreed with the coalition to “federal states including Madhesh province.” The government has made such agreements with several other groups who were rioting and demanding provinces of their own. The situation was very volatile, as the Maoists had just joined mainstream politics, the monarchy was under suspension and the state’s capacity was in an all-time-low situation.

4. What are the points of contention in constitution writing?
As discussed above, the Maoist-Madheshi coalition is not in power after CA II. They performed dismally in the elections. The coalition of two centrist-leftist parliamentary-democratic parties NC and UML is in power now. Both coalitions have the support of several other smaller parties. The ruling coalition of NC-UML has a two-thirds majority in the CA II. These two parties have won more seats than any other parties (or all of them combined) in the Madhesh belt too. They went to the election rejecting the “single-ethnic identity based provinces” and other points advocated by the Maoist-Madheshi coalition. They won people’s support. Right now, the bone of contention is said to be the very subject of carving out provinces for the federal-government model. The opposition coalition wants a single province in the southern plains, or two, as a compromise. The ruling coalition says that is not acceptable. It is important to understand that neither side has clearly published their stances and federal model to the public. All remains murky. From the interviews of leaders published online or in print, the ruling coalition’s proposal seems to address the demands for linguistic rights and proportional representation for different ethnic groups. But they seem reluctant to name the provinces on ethnic grounds, and want them to be named based on geography, rivers, mountains or cultural heritages. The points where the opposition disagrees over these proposals are not clear apart from their demand of naming the provinces after some large ethnic groups. They talk about “identity”, “redress for the oppressed groups” and “progressive constitution”- but we haven’t found any concrete points as to what they constitute in the new constitution. The only clearly articulated point of disagreement seems to be the nature of province in the plains, but it is unlikely that such a big rift could have grown out of this. Some people suggest a hidden power-sharing agreement to be behind the conflict (more on this later).

5. Why such a problem with a province in the plains?
There are different viewpoints to this, and it is difficult to provide a single, coherent justification that is agreeable to all, but let’s try. The southern plains of Nepal stretch for almost 800 kilometers from east to west, along the Indo-Nepal border. It is home to almost half of the country’s population, and almost all ethnic groups. The southern plains, called Terai or Madhesh is home to not just the Madheshi people (who constitute about 20-30% of Nepal’s population, and less than 50% of the plains), but also to hill people, and usually there are many areas with mixed settlements. This is an important distinction for people who view Nepal from eyes trained elsewhere, where it’s easy to draw lines in country as a “Muslim North” and “Christian South”. Such situation is absent in Nepal, not just in the plains, but also in the hills. And apart from small pockets of areas where one group dominates, almost all of Nepal’s territory has competing historical claims by multiple groups of people.

Nepal has more than 100 ethnic groups (cultural groups) with as many languages, cultures and traditions. Many of these groups have suffered discrimination because of the South-Asian caste-system, a feudal state structure that emerged in Nepalese hills as a response to European-Islamic expansion in the subcontinent, a nationalist fervor that is typical to small countries sandwiched between big, aggressive powers and a state struggling to consolidate, which is typical to ungovernable mountain terrains with their proud people. But to say that the Maoist-Madheshi coalition are the representative of this section of population is a gross generalization. The ruling NC-UML coalition has been voted in huge numbers by the same people and in areas contested as theirs by the opposition coalition. This is indication of people’s disagreement to the federal and constitutional model presented by the opposition coalition. They were often criticized for being too violent, divisory, extreme, and racist. People of Nepal, having lived in harmony, disliked such an agenda, and preferred a more conciliatory approach.

Then, there’s the question of geopolitics. It is believed that China dislikes the idea of a province running along India’s borders. India, as mentioned above, has been seen as a supporter of such a claim.

6. What’s the solution to the current impasse?
Again, it is hard to provide an unbiased opinion here. Let’s first review the current situation. The interim constitution that is in effect today mandates that the constitution can be drafted through a “consensus”, failing which, a two-thirds majority can approve it. The task of finding such a consensus and preparing questions on which the assembly would vote was given to the Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai. He’d lead a parliamentary committee to discuss and decide on these matters. Most of the time he spent in this position has been bizzare, to say the least. He invited a separatist campaigner (from the Southern plains) for discussion on the issues of federalism, but never entertained voices that have opposed federalism (in favor for more decentralization of state powers). In a bid to garner more media-attention, he was busy issuing pictures and tweets of who he was meeting and where he was traveling as the deadline of his committee kept expiring. He was even debating starting a “new-force”- in order to bargain for more powers inside his own party and to split it, if he didn’t get them. Essentially, after several extentions, his committee failed miserably at finding consensus and also preparing the list of questions for the assembly to discuss and vote. The opposition coalition is demanding that consensus still be sought. People are starting to get fed up after years of the process, and want a constitution written early. The assembly’s own deadline of January 22nd has expired. The opposition parties took to violent street protests, vandalism inside the assembly and threats of more violence if their demand of “consensus” was not met. The ruling parties want to move ahead with the process of preparing questions for discussion and engaging the CA as efforts to forge a consensus continues.

7. Could there be hidden reasons for the current crisis, apart from what meets the eyes?
It has been said that Maoist chairman Prachanda and second-in-command Bhattarai have been trying to bargain important positions in the post-constitution power-sharing agreement. They want immunity from war crimes as a condition to forge a consensus. Leaders from the ruling coalition, including KP Oli, Prime Minister Koirala, and others have also been said to eye important positions. It is hard to confirm any of this, however.

But looking at how parties almost reached consensus several times before the January 22nd deadline, and mysteriously “failed” to maintain it, this looks plausible. If federalism was the only point of disagreement, such a consensus would have been impossible. A similar situation was seen prior to the dissolution of CA I when an agreement was violated by the ruling coalition of that time.

It is also essential to remember that although the opposition coalition has been called the voice of the oppressed and marginalized people of Nepal, their own behavior, principles and attitudes seem to be miles apart from such ideals. The Maoist party’s political principle is a centralized party apparatus to dictate over the diverse group of people. Their own lifestyles, past record of doing anything to justify their power goals, and political dishonesty paints a picture that is in contrast to the one potrayed by their supporters in media and intellectual circles. Similarly, the leaders of Madhesi coalition belong to the upper-caste landlords and feudals of Madhesh. According to statistics published by the UN and Nepal’s universities, these groups are the most advanced ethnic group in Nepal in terms of social-economic and educational status. On the other hand, the poor people of Madhesh, including Dalits, are Nepal’s poorest. During a BBC interview, a Madheshi leader Rajendra Mahato used abusive words against the physically challenged people, raising questions about his displayed principle of equality and fair treatment. Madheshi leaders have often warned of “pulling off the tongues” of people who disagreed with their views.

We don’t believe that the controversy is about federalism or providing more rights to the people. We’d be happy if it were so.

न्यायको लडाईँमा तपाईँको साथ


हिजो र आजका अपराध गर्नेहरुलाई कारवाही भएमात्र भोलीका अपराधीहरु दुरुत्साहित हुन्छन्। नेपालमा आफ्नै सत्ता नै आएपनि विश्वसमुदायले सजायँ दिइछाड्ने रहेछ भनेर उनीहरु डराउनेछन् र हामी सुरक्षित हुनेछौँ। अहिले न्यायको खोजि किन गर्नुपरेको हो भन्नेबारे मेरो विचार।


कर्नेण कुमार लामालाई अनुसन्धानको निम्ति विदेशमा हिरासतला लिनु र डेकेन्द्र थापा हत्याकाण्डको बारे नेपालमा छानविन चल्नु करिब एकै समयमा भएका घटना थिए। लामाको पक्राउले नेपाल राष्ट्र कमजोर भएको सन्देश दिन्छ, त्यसकारण त्यसको सबैले विरोध गर्नुपर्छ भन्ने एउटा मत थियो। अर्को मत यो पनि थियो कि मानवअधिकार अपराध बारे छानविन र कारवाहि नेपालले गर्दैन भने विदेशमै भएपनि हुनु राम्रै कुरा हो। म दुबै मतसँग सहमत छु। नेपालको कुटनीतिक प्रतिष्ठा र नेपाली नागरिकको सुरक्षाको बारे हामीले पीर गर्नुपर्छ। विदेशीले हाम्रो नागरिक पक्रियो भने त्यसको बारे उचित कदम चालेर उसको सुरक्षा गर्नु हाम्रै दायित्व हो। तर कानुन र र विधिको शाषण मान्ने देश हौँ र त्यस्तै अन्तर्राष्ट्रिय छवि बनाउन चाहेका हौँ भने मानवअधिकार हनन र युद्ध अपराध जस्ता गम्भिर मुद्दाको बारे हामीले बाकिँ विश्वलाई ढुक्क बनाउन सकेनौँ भने हाम्रो हालत झन् खराब हुन्छ।

Maoists attempted to murder journalist TIka Bista even after the start of peace process (picture: Nepali TImes)

Maoists attempted to murder journalist TIka Bista even after the start of peace process (picture: Nepali TImes)

शान्ति प्रकिया शुरु भैसकेपछि पनि नेपालमा बोलेको र लेखेको भरमा धेरैले सजाँय भोग्नुपरेको छ। केहि वर्ष अघि रुकुमकी टिका विष्टलाई माओवादिले मरणाशन्न हुनेगरी आक्रमण गरेका थिए। शान्तिप्रकिया शुरु हुने बेला तिरै बारामा वीरेन्द्र साहको हत्या गरिएको थियो। उमा सिंहको हत्या अझै रहस्यमयी रहेको छ। जिल्लाहरुमा थुप्रै पत्रकार, अधिकारकर्मी, राजनीतिकर्मी र समाजकर्मीहरु प्रति आक्रमण भइरहेकै छन्। आजकल राजनीतिमा माओवादिको बन्दुक, पैसा र पाखुरासँग प्रतिस्पर्धा गर्न मुश्किल बनेकोले र आफ्नै आधार र अडान गुम्दै गएकोले एमाले-काङ्ग्रेसहरुले पनि यस्तै हर्कत गर्न थालेका छन्। यद्दपी केन्द्रिय नेताहरुलाई दवाव दिएपछि उनीहरुले आफ्नो लोकतान्त्रिक छवि र विगतको कारणले कहिलेकाहिँ कार्यकर्ताहरुलाई त्यस्ता काम कम गर्न निर्देशन पनि दिने गरेका छन्। माओवादिका उपल्ला नेताहरु भने खुलेआम नै अझै धेरै बलिदान गराउन तयार रहेको, अरुलाई झम्टिनु परेको, खुट्टा भाँच्नु परेको आदि निर्देशन दिइरहन्छन् र हिंशा नै एकमात्र उपाय र सत्य रहेको स्विकार्छन्। त्यसकारण यस्तो स्थितीमा न्यायको खोजी, विधिको शाषण र लोकतान्त्रिक प्रकियाको विकास गर्न निकै अप्ठेरो हुँदै गइरहेको छ।

Dekendra Thapa, a journalist murdered by Maoists during their war (picture: mikeldunham.blogs.com)

Dekendra Thapa, a journalist murdered by Maoists during their war (picture: mikeldunham.blogs.com)

न्यायको खोजी किन चाहिएको हो? म आफ्नो व्यक्तिगत बिचार प्रस्तुत गर्न चाहन्छु। म जस्ता लेख्ने-बोल्ने मानिसहरुलाई र देशका सबै जनतालाई निरन्तर एउटा भय छ, कतिखेर के हुने हो। के बोलेको वा कार्य गरेको आधारमा कसको आक्रमणको तारो बन्नुपर्ने हो कसैलाई थाहा छैन। स्थानीय तह र गाउँटोलमा यो स्थिति झनै डरलाग्दो छ, किनकी त्यहाँ यस्तै मानिसहरुसँग दिनदिनै व्यवहार गर्दै बस्नुपर्ने वाध्यता छ र केहि परे सुरक्षा-कानुनको कुनै ग्यारेन्टि छैन।

विगत र हालका अपराध गर्नेहरुलाई कारवाहि भयो भने कम्तिमा म ढुक्कसँग लेख्न पाउँछु। त्यस्तो कारवाहिले अपराध गर्नेहरुलाई दुरुत्साहित गर्छ। भोली कसैलाई धम्कि दिनुअघि, कुनै भौतिक आक्रमण गर्नु अघि वा ज्यान लिनुअघि उनीहरुले धेरैपटक सोच्छन्। नेपालमा मेरै सरकार भएपनि विदेशमा समात्ने रहेछ, विदेशमा नसमातेपनि नेपालमै दवाव बढेर कारवाहि भइछाड्ने रहेछ भन्ने उनीहरुलाई थाहा हुन्छ। नेपालले कुनै पनि युद्ध अपराधीलाई कारवाहि नगर्ने हो भने नेपाल सहभागी रहेको अन्तर्राष्ट्रिय मञ्चहरुबाट नेपाल बहिष्कृत हुन पनि सक्छ र नेपालका नागरिकहरुलाई घुमफिर गर्न कडाइ गरिन सक्छ। नेपाललाई सहयोग रोक्का गर्ने वा दवाव दिएर एक्लो बनाउने कार्यहरु हुनसक्छन्। त्यसपछि हामी भारत र चीनको शरणमा पर्नुपर्ने हुन्छ, र उनीहरुले समयोग गर्न राजी भएपनि कडा सर्तहरुको सामु सम्झौता गर्नुपर्नेछ। त्यसपछि केको राष्ट्रियता, केको सार्वभौमिकता।

Nanda Prasad Adhikari and Ganga Maya have been fighting a long and deadly battle for justice (picture: blog.com.np)

Nanda Prasad Adhikari and Ganga Maya have been fighting a long battle for justice (picture: blog.com.np)


त्यसकारण अहिले दोषिहरुलाई कारवाहि नगर्ने हो भने र कानुनी प्रकिया विना हस्तक्षेप अघि नबढाउने हो भने यो देशमा कोहि सुरक्षित छैन। मजस्ता अरु धेरैले नाम लुकाएरै लेखिरहनुपर्नेछ वा त्यसो गर्न पनि पाउने छैनन्। अहिले विभिन्न मानिसहरुले व्यक्तिगत तहमा गरिरहेको न्यायको लडाईँलाई साथ दिनुको हामीसँग विकल्प छैन। एकजनाले न्याय पाए अरुपनि उत्साहित भएर न्याय माग्न अघि बढ्नेछन्। नत्र अहिले न्याय माग्नेको बोली बन्द गरिदिने हो भने भोली कोहि पनि अगाडि आउने छैन र यो देशबाट न्याय र कानुन सदाको निम्ति समाप्त भयो भनेर बुझे हुन्छ। झन् चुनावको अगाडि यस्तो नजिर बसाउने हो भने चुनाव कस्तो होला, परिणाम कस्तो आउला र हामी सबैको भविष्य कस्तो होला?

यदि तपाईँलाई आफ्ननो स्वतन्त्रता प्यारो छ, आफ्नो अधिकार र कर्तव्य वहन गर्न मन छ, आफ्नो र सन्ततिको भविष्य र सुरक्षित बाँच्न पाउने हकको पीर छ भने तपाईँले कसको साथ दिनुपर्छ र कसका अतिवादको विरुद्ध अडान लिनुपर्छ, तपाईँलाई राम्रोसँग थाहा छ। अहिले अपराधीहरुलाई कारवाहि हुने हो भने तपाईँमाथी अपराध गर्न भोलीका संभावित अपराधिले अनेक पटक सोच्नेछ र शायद अपराध गर्नबाट पछि हट्नेछन्। नभए तपाईँसम्म उनीहरुका डरलाग्दा हातहरु आइपुग्न कत्तिपनि समय लाग्नेछैन। हेर्दा हेर्दै त्यो हातले तपाईँ-हाम्रो घाटी निमोठ्ने छ, तर हाम्रो निम्ति बोल्न कोहि तयार हुनेछैन, हाम्रो बोली कसैले सुन्ने छैन।


More information:

A couple has been fighting a long battle for justice in Nepal. Their teenaged son was killed during armed conflict in Nepal, allegedly by the Maoist. The government jailed the couple when they asked for justice and later sent them to a mental hospital. They’re fighting for their life now in a Kathmandu hospital. Although police are investigating the case, Maoist leaders Baburam and Prachanda have openly threatened the government and civil society against any investigation. They repeated their threat again today, and warned that serious actions will be taken if the investigation is carried out. The government has remained silent and even failed to assure a fair trail and independent legal process.

HRW: Nepal: Adhikari’s Parents Deserve Answers

HTW: Nepal: Truth & Reconciliation Law Betrays Victims

फुजेल घटनाको अनुसन्धान रोक्न दवाब

Rights and Wrongs. Two Photos, Two Stories. Justice and Injustice. Nepal

Democracy without justice

President’s coup or Maoist propaganda?



A republican order means that ordinary citizens can rise to the highest ranks of power. By asking the President not to “forget his roots of being a buffalo herder,” the Maoists have exposed that republicanism is just a smokescreen for their ulterior goals.


General Rukmangad Katwal

General Rukmangad Katwal (Picture: telegraphnepal.com)


I think everybody agrees now that a disastrous front-page story in Kantipur daily by its editor Sudheer Sharma (who I respect) accompanied by an english equivalent in The Kathmandu Post (by its editor Akhilesh Upadhyay, who again I respect very much) describing a failed coup d’état by the CoAS of the time, Rukmangad Katwal was largely a product of imagination (not necessarily the Editors’). It is not easy being in the media business- you get information of all sorts from people of all kinds. You then have to decide what to trust, what to publish, what to watch for a while or what to out-rightly reject. However, the imagination was successfully planted in two of the major daily newspapers in Nepal.

Accept it or not, we were all smitten by the Maoist bug once in our lives; the amount may vary. There was a time when the whole country was madly in love with the comrades despite all they had done, written and said many times over. We believed ourselves, our analysts, our media-men and many people in many guises when they said that the Maoists had signed the 12-point agreement in order to find a “safe landing,” a way for them to join peaceful democratic politics and pursue their beautiful goal of making Nepal a highly democratic, developed, and modern country. Today, many heartbreaks later, the only difference seems that some people got over this bug sooner than others. Some others never had this bug- as they would soon be comrades-in-arms, or had been so all along. They had a choice: to be the useful idiots, or to aid the war in different capacities (fighting with guns is always risky, you know, or ask DPM Narayankaji, or some writers and columnists).

"Strongman": Akhilesh Upadhyay wrote about Baburam Bhattarai's tendencies (picture: nepaliblogger.com)

“Strongman”: Akhilesh Upadhyay has written about Baburam Bhattarai’s tendencies (click on the picture for the story) (picture: nepaliblogger.com)

Another product of imagination seems to have found its way into the media lately. I can guess that the esteemed Editors mentioned above, among many others have survived the heartbreaks and learned a lesson or two. That explains why this imagination could not find its way into any mainstream news outlet, and had to be unceremoniously planted in a blog. Apart from that, the Maoist conviction that President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav planned a failed coup d’état recently against Baburam Bhattarai’s government was sneaked into an interview of the finance minister Barshaman Pun. A couple of other government ministers made similar allegations against the President in some press meetings. This got the President’s office miffed, and they have challenged the government to investigate the matter and bring out the truth to the people. They have further called for action against the ministers if the accusations are not substantiated. The President has also made it clear to leaders of major parties that “he will not, and cannot take any action without the consensus of political parties.” Not surprisingly though, a news story whose major portion sounded very much like a government distributed propaganda-material was published yesterday in The Hindu. The story contains no mention of the call by President’s office to investigate the matter or his refusal of the allegation. The writer, Prashant Jha, is known to be close to the ruling coalition, and also as a lobbyist for Prime Minister Bhattarai.

Sounds familiar? Why is this happening all over again? The truth of the matter, as put by another Editor who earns my great respect is that the “parties don’t feel any pressure from the President, they just pretend they do. Reason: the public.” The President of Nepal has largely been a conciliatory figurehead acting as per the court’s or the constitutional provisions. The Maoist-Madheshi Morcha government led by Baburam Bhattarai on the other hand, has repeatedly been an aggressor in the national politics, both before and after it successfully dissolved the Constituent Assembly that was also acting as a parliament.

PM Bhattarai is said to be one of the most intelligent and shrewd politicians Nepal has seen after 1990 (picture: Mercantile Communications)

PM Bhattarai is said to be one of the most intelligent and shrewd politicians Nepal has seen after 1990 (picture: Mercantile Communications)

The government, deemed “care-taker” by the President, has misappropriated the national treasury in a shameless manner (see recent press reports for the massive scale in which this is going on), and has been unable to hold elections it announced in a unilaterally. In the ensuing constitutional and political vacuum, the government’s supporters have openly announced that they’ll continue ruling like this for 25 years to come. They have taken actions to back up this claim too, for example: the Judiciary and all major constitutional bodies are going to be defunct because of the failure to man them by the government, and many arbitrary actions of the government in the absence of the parliament look like preparation for a new bout of authoritarian regime in Nepal, under the leadership of Dr. Bhattarai. In such a situation, the President’s office is now standing between the government and its will to get a free hand in running the country. Aware of this, the government even dared to ask the President to issue an ordinance which would in effect make ordinances unnecessary, making the cabinet’s decision equivalent to law. Naturally, the President’s office refused to budge to such an outrageous attempt. In the absence of a regular parliament, ordinances cannot be discussed within one month of being issued, as required by the interim constitution. The constitution further requires all major decisions to be taken by the parties in “consensus.” the President’s office is only trying to abide by the constitution and not invite any controversy for its actions.

Maoists protesting against the President in 2009, after resigning from power. They staged roadshows mimicking the President as a buffalo herder (picture: demotix.com, Edwin Koo)

Maoists protesting against the President in 2009, after resigning from power. They staged roadshows mimicking the President as a buffalo herder (picture: demotix.com, Edwin Koo)

Recently, the government has publicly threatened the President to issue an ordinance on the fiscal budget, and has warned of dire consequences if he fails to do so. The planted news stories seem to have come in this context. It seems like a last-ditch effort to destabilize the President’s office, having done so with almost all established institutions in the country. Of course, observers of the Maoists’ protest rallies in 2009 following their government’s resignation know pretty well that their advocacy of the republican order is just a smokescreen for their ulterior goals (it was during this very time that the Gen. Katwal led coup story made headlines) . After getting down from power, apart from the propaganda about Gen. Katwal’s coup d’état, the Maoists staged a very vulgar scene in the streets. I was first-hand witness to their mimicry of the President as a buffalo-herder and statements indicating that a buffalo herder has forgot where he belongs by not coming to the aid of their plans. Let me remind you that President Yadav has humble roots as he used to be a buffalo herder in his village during his childhood.

Of course, it was stupid of us all to be smitten by the Maoist bug in the first place. Here is a party that has never flinched one bit from its commitment from a totalitarian system of governance and violence as a political tool, here’s a party that advocates centralization of power into a group of elites called the “party politburo” (contrast this with their federalism gameplan), and that has in its official records, repeatedly denounced established democratic norms, and here’s a group of leaders who do not believe in economic freedom and individual liberties- still we chose to believe in the opposite. Of course, people who want to replace a monarchy with a republican order with the noble goal of making it possible for ordinary citizens to rise to the highest ranks of power cannot be challenging it’s very fundamentals- that the beauty of a republican order is just that a buffalo herder can become our President. It has neither apologized for such vulgarity, nor has shown any indication of changing that attitude. It was all along a love affair based on impossible dreams and lies. So when I say that the rumor spread by the Maoists on the Presidential coup is just another in a series of such propaganda they have mastered, I do not expect to be believed.

बजेट आउनु अघि



के हालका वर्षहरुमा नेपालको गरीबी बढाउन सबैभन्दा जिम्मेवार “गरीबमुखी” भनेर चिनिन चाहनेहरु नै हैनन् र ?


November 2010: Maoist lawmakers roughing up Finance Minister Surendra Pandey as the latter prepares to present the budget for 2010/11 fiscal in the parliament.

November 2010: Maoist lawmakers roughing up Finance Minister Surendra Pandey as the latter prepares to present the budget for 2010/11 fiscal in the parliament. (Picture: THT ONLINE)

देशको वार्षिक बजेट आउनेवाला छ, तर राजनीतिक खिचातानीका बिच नआउन पनि सक्छ । वैधानिक सरकारले ल्याउन खोजेको बजेटकै दौरान संसदमै हानाहान गरेर अर्थमन्त्रिको हातबाट झोला खोस्ने चलन बसेको देशमा अधिकार विहीन बनिसकेको र वैधानिकता पनि गुमाउन लागिसकेको सरकारले ल्याएको बजेट उपर के कस्तो रडाँको मच्चिने हो, हेर्न त बाकिँ नै छ । यो लेखको विषय भने बजेटलाई कसरी हेर्ने भन्ने बारेको एक पक्षसँग मात्र सम्बन्धित छ । नेपालमा बजेट आएपछि सबैतिर हुने चर्चा प्राय राहतहरुका विषयमा हुन्छ: तलब कति बढ्यो, भत्ता कति थपियो, अनुदान बढ्यो कि बढेन, वितरण हुने रकम कति मोटो छ? तिनै विषयहरु उपर पत्रिकामा लेखहरु छापिएलान् र सो कै आधारमा कतिले बजेटको मुल्याङ्कन गर्लान् । त्यसमाथी गरीबमुखि भनेर चिनिन चाहने वर्तमान प्रधानमन्त्री, अर्थमन्त्रि, उनीहरुको पार्टि आदिको समूहले ल्याउने बजेट झनै रोचक हुनेछ । यस विषयमा हामीले कस्तो तयारी गर्ने, बजेटलाई के आधारमा मुल्याङ्कन गर्ने ? यो लेखको विषय यहि हो ।
Continue reading

सन्दर्भ : बिसुनी सदाको घरमा बाबुराम भट्टराईको रात्रिभोज


प्रधानमन्त्रि बाबुराम भट्टराई निजी सम्पत्तिमा विश्वास गर्दैनन्। उनले आफ्नो पार्टिको नीति पनि यहि बनाएका छन। सक्दा हुन् त त्यसैलाई देशको नीति पनि बनाउँथे- संविधानमा त्यस्तो व्यवस्था लेख्न खोजेका पनि हुन् र “माओवादि छापको संविधान नबने नस्विकार्ने” समेत बताएकै हुन् (त्यहि भएरै संविधान सभा विघठन गरेका हुन्)। यस्तो मा महोत्तरीका बिसुनी सदालाई प्रधानमन्त्रिको रात्रिभोज व्यवस्था गर्दा ऋण लागेको कुरालाई हामीहरु जसरी बुझ्छौँ, बाबुरामले त्यसरी बुझ्दैनन्। यस समस्याको बाबुरामीय समाधान हो: ऋण दिने मान्छेलाई जबरजस्ति सो ऋण मिनाह गर्न लगाउनु, नमाने आफ्ना पार्टिका लठैतहरु लगाएर बाध्य पार्नु। उनी सबै सम्पत्ति राज्यको हुने अर्थव्यवस्थामा विश्वास गर्छन्। त्यस्तोमा उनले सदाको घरमा गएर खाएको पनि राज्यकै श्रोत हो, नखाए पनि आखिर त्यो राज्यकै थियो। यसलाई उचालेर ठूलो कुरा बनाएको प्रधानमन्त्रिलाई पक्कै मनपर्ने छैन र मौका मिले उनी भन्नेछन्- “यो केहि सिमीत समूहको कुण्ठामात्र हो, यसको कुनै महत्व छैन। हामीलाई थाहा छ कि जनता हामीलाई खाना खुवाउन एकदम खुशि छन् र अरु खुवाउन चाहन्छन्”।

PM Bhattarai with his team at the dinner

PM Bhattarai with his team at the dinner (Picture: ekantipur.com)


प्रधानमन्त्रिले दलितको घरमा गएर खाना खानु राम्रो कुरा हो, यसले जातीय भेदभावको प्रथालाई दुरुत्साहन गर्छ। अझ उनले सार्वजनिक यातायत चढेरै गए हुन्थ्यो, त्यसो गर्दा बाटोमा मानिसहरुले दैनिक रुपमा भोग्ने समस्या र भेदभाव पनि थाहा लाग्थ्यो होला र केहि समाधान पनि निकाल्थे होला। यद्दपी यस्ता समस्याहरु समाधान गर्ने अरु धेरै राम्रा बाटोहरु होलान्, तर प्रधानमन्त्रिले खाना खानुलाई नै म त्यति ठूलो विषय बनाउनेवाला छैन। समस्या गएर खाना खानुमा छैन। समस्या प्रधानमन्त्रि स्वयंले गर्ने शोषण र भेदभावमा छ।

भट्टराई एकदमै पूर्वाग्रहि व्यक्ति भएको तथ्य अब कसैबाट लुकेको छैन। उनी लडाईँमा मरेका आफ्ना पार्टिका मानिस बाहेकलाई शहिद पनि मान्दैनन्। यो भन्दा अघि उनी खाना खान गएको पश्चिमको एउटा घरकी छोरीलाई सेनाले लगेर मारेको रहेछ। उनले माओवादीले लगेर मारेका मानिसहरुलाई साहनुभुती दिन कहिल्यै चाहेका छैनन्, बरु तीनका घाऊमा नुन छर्किन उनलाई मनपर्छ। त्यस्तै बीबीसी नेपाली सेवाको हिजोको रिपोर्टमा पनि “भट्टराई निकट मानिने भरत साहको फुलकहा गाउँमा राती बसेका प्रधानमन्त्रि” भनिएको छ। यसरी हेर्दा आफ्नो पार्टिका खड्गबहादुर विश्वकर्मा मोहन वैद्य खेमामा गएपछि त्यसको राजनीतिक क्षति न्युनिकरण गर्न यि भ्रमणहरुको प्रयोग गरेजस्तै देखिन्छ। त्यसलाई अनेक नाम दिएर “लोकप्रिय” बनाउन खोज्नु उनको चारित्रिक विशेषता नै हो, तर तीनलाई हामीले जस्ताको त्यस्तै पत्याउनु पर्छ भन्ने पनि छैन।

अर्को भेदभाव उनले श्रमको सम्मान नगरेर गरेका छन्। होटेल-रेस्टुराँमा खाएको पैसा माओवादी बाहेक अरुले त तिर्नैपर्छ। अरुको घरमा खाँदा पैसा तिर्न नपरे पनि अरु शिष्टाचारीय नियमहरु हाम्रो संस्कारले स्थापना गरेका छन्। मैले देखेको नेपाली संस्कार अनुसार पनि कसैकोमा पाहुना लाग्दा केहि खानेकुरा कोशेली लिएर गइन्छ र आफुले पनि निम्तो दिएर फर्किइन्छ। चिनेजानेकालाई खानेकुराको पैसा दिँदा अपमान हुने हाम्रो चलन भएकोले यस्तो अप्रत्यक्ष रुपले तिर्ने व्यवस्था बसेको हुनुपर्छ। त्यसमाथी ५०-५० वटा गाडिका लस्कर लिएर खान गएपछि त “दु:ख भयो होला” भनेर काममा सघाइदिनु त अनिवार्य नै हो। हुन त हाम्रा प्रधानमन्त्रि सबै नेपाली संस्कारहरु फ्याँकेर नयाँ संस्कार बसाउने अभियानमा लागेका मान्छे, उनलाई यीनको मतलब नहुँदो हो। तर किसानहरुको श्रमको पुरै अवमूल्यन गरेर प्रधानमन्त्रिले आफ्ना उपलब्धिहरुको सुचीमा “श्रमशोषक”को परिचय पनि थपेका छन्। यसरी कुनै निम्न आय भएको किसानको घरमा अबुझले झैँ दर्जनौँ मानिस बोकेर पाहुना लाग्नु, उनको समय र श्रमको कुनै महत्व नभएजस्तो गरी र आफैँले आर्जेको जस्तो गरी मजासँग खाना खाएपछि आफ्नो बाटो लाग्नु लज्जाविहिनताको राम्रो उधाहरण हो। उनले प्रचार-प्रसार लगायत आफ्ना व्यक्तिगत स्वार्थहरुका निम्ति यसरी निम्न आय भएका मानिसहरुको उपयोग र शोषण गरेर ती मानिसहरु र आफूले प्रतिनिधित्व गर्ने भनेको वर्गकै मजाक उडाँएका छन् ।

बाबुराम भट्टराईले यस्तो गर्नु नयाँ वा आश्चर्यजनक भने पक्कै होइन। उनले चलाएको युद्धको समयमा पनि उनका कार्यकर्ताहरुले गाउँमा जनतालाई दिनुसम्म दु:ख दिएको कुरा जगजाहेरै छ। मानिसहरुका भकारी लुटेको, खानामा “मासु-भात नै चाहिने” उर्दि दिएको र भनेजस्तो नभए खाना फ्याँकेर हिँडेका कुरा लेखक स्यंयले भरपर्दा भुक्तभोगीहरु र कहिलेकाँहि आफन्तैहरुबाट सुनेको हो। भट्टराईबाट ती भन्दा उपल्लो स्तरको व्यवहारको अपेक्षा गर्नेहरुको common sense मा प्रश्न गर्नु बरु बढि उचित हुनेछ ।

अब के गर्ने (What do we do now) ?



अङ्ग्रेजी संस्करण तल छ । English version follows.
के गर्ने भन्नेबारे तपाईँको बिचार के छ? मसँग हामीहरु आफैँ-आफैँले गर्नसक्ने केहि कामहरुको योजना छ, बहस गर्नेभए इमेलमा वा तल कमेन्ट बक्समा छलफल गरौँ ।
I have a plan about a couple of things we can do from our side. If you have some ideas about “what do we do now,” let’s discuss them over email or in the comment box below.


अहिले टेलिभिजनमा भट्टराईको चर्चित मुख बन्द गरी गरी आधा हाँसिने कुटिल र आडम्बरी मुस्कान देख्दा मेरो मनमा अनायसै विचार आउँछ, “कठै बरा हामी नेपाली जनता ।” हिरोको आशमा तड्पिरहेको समाजको नियती यस्तै नै हो।

Politicos (picture: nepalitimes.com)

Politicos (picture: nepalitimes.com)

हाम्रा नेताजीहरु साह्रै बिग्रिए। वास्तवमा भन्ने हो भने उनीहरुको केहि काम छैन। राजाहरु हुँदासम्म कम्तिमा देशको अलिकति इज्जत भने थियो। उनीहरु विश्वका नामी विश्वविद्यालयहरुमा पढेका थिए, संसारका धेरै महत्वपूर्ण व्यक्तिहरु र नेताहरुसँग उनीहरुको व्यक्तिगत सम्बन्ध पनि थियो। यस्तो अप्ठेरो भुगोल र पिछडिएको समाजलाई आधुनिक देशमा बदल्न संयुक्त राष्ट्रसंघको सदस्यता बनाउने देखी लिएर आफ्ना नागरिकहरुलाई विश्वका धेरै ठाउँमा स्थापित गराउन उनीहरु सफल थिए। एककिसिमको सद्भाव थियो नेपालप्रति त्यतिखेर विश्वसमुदायमा। त्यसैले त करीब-करीब हाम्रो जस्तै स्थिति भएको तिब्बत, सिक्किम, भुटान, कस्मिर, अफ्गानिस्तान जस्ता ठाउँहरुको तुलनामा हामी धेरै अगाडि बढेका पनि थियौँ। भारतकै आधाभन्दा बढि राज्यहरुभन्दा हाम्रो विकासको स्तर ५-६ वर्षअघिसम्म पनि राम्रो थियो। नेताहरुलाई आन्दोलन गर्न र बिगार्नबाहेक केहि आउँदैन। उनीहरुलाई बरु स्थिति बिग्रिरहोस, ताकि आफुले विरोध गर्न पाइरहुँ भन्ने भावना छ, किनकि बनाउन उनीहरुलाई आउँदैन। ४६ सालपछि प्राप्त ठुलो अवसरलाई उनीहरुले संस्कार र संस्थाहरुको विकास गर्न खर्च नगरी खेर जानै दिए। अहिलेपनि गर्न सकिने धेरै कामहरु गर्नुको साटो नेपालले फेरी त्यहि दुश्चक्र बेहोर्नुपरिरहेको छ। लाग्छ नेपालको नियती सधैँ २०१७ सालकै वरिपरी घुमिरहनु हो, सँधै एकै गल्तीको लागि हामीले मूल्य चुकाइदिइरहनुपर्ने ।

कुनै हिसाबले पुष्टि गर्न नसकिने इतिहासकै सबैभन्दा महङ्गो युद्धमा नेपाल जाकियो। बाबुराम भट्टराई लगायतका केहि अहंकारी मानिसहरुको व्यक्तिगत इच्छा र कुण्ठाको खातिर नेपाली जनताले के मात्र बलिदान गरेनन् ? पढाइमा जान्ने भएको, लायक भएर पनि मौका नपाएको जस्ता अनेक बहानामा भट्टराईलाई मिडियाले र जनताले निकै माया गरिराखे। आखिर देशको सबैभन्दा पुरानो संस्था, प्रजातन्त्र, नागरिक अधिकार, आर्थिक विकास लगायतका महत्वपूर्ण निकायहरु धेरै नसोचिकन पनि उनिहरुले त्याग्न तयार भइदिए। के का लागि? अहिले टेलिभिजनमा भट्टराईको चर्चित मुख बन्द गरी गरी आधा हाँसिने कुटिल र आडम्बरी मुस्कान देख्दा मेरो मनमा अनायसै विचार आउँछ, “कठै बरा हामी नेपाली जनता ।”

अब फेरी अर्को २०१७ सालको चक्र दोहोरिएर दु:ख पाउनु अघि हामीले केहि सोच्नुपर्ने भएको छ। किन हामीसँग यस्तो भइरहेको छ ? मलाई लाग्छ हाम्रा बुझाइ र चाहनाहरुमा समस्या छन्। हामी प्रधानमन्त्रि, राष्ट्रपति वा राजामा सबै समस्याको समाधान देख्न चाहन्छौँ, राजनीति गर्ने असफल मानिसहरुपनि प्रधानमन्त्रि भएपछि मात्र सबैकुरा गर्न सकिन्छ भन्ने सोच्छन् । आखिर सिनेमाका अभिनेतालाई “हिरो” भन्ने समाज शायद हाम्रै मात्र हो दुनिँयामा। हिरोको आशमा तड्पिरहेको समाजको नियती यस्तै नै हो। प्रधानमन्त्रि वा राष्ट्रपतिले सबै अधिकार पाएमात्र विकास हुन्छ भन्ने हामीलाई लाग्छ।

त्यसकारण अबदेखि विद्यालय तहबाट नै केहि आवश्यक सिद्दान्तहरु हामीसबैले पढ्नु जरुरी छ। हामीमा नागरिक दायित्व, सामाजिक चेत र इतिहासको मूल्याङ्ककन गर्ने क्षमता विकास हुनु जरुरी छ। स्कूलमै टोलीहरु बनाई समाज र राष्ट्रबारे कृतिम समस्याहरु दिएर, कसरी समाधान गर्छौ, छलफल गरेर आऊ भन्ने गृहकार्यहरु दिनु आवश्यक छ, यस किसिमको एक विषय अब पढाइनु जरुरी छ । हाम्रो देशका अधिकांस बुज्रुकहरु अझै पनि यस्ता हाँस्यास्पद तर्क वा कुतर्कहरु गर्छन, त्यो पनि खुलेआम सार्वजनिक रुपमा वा संचार-माध्यमहरुमा, जुन सुन्दा कुनैपनि सभ्य समाजका बच्चाहरु पनि हाँस्दा हुन्। तीभन्दा बढि दार्शनिक र गंभिर कुराहरु त मैले कतिपय विदेशि गीत र सिनेमाहरुमा सुनेको छु- मलाई लाग्छ जति पढेको-सुनेको भनेपनि त्यस्तो एउटा औसत साङ्गितक समूहले हाम्रा नेताहरुले भन्दा बढि जिवन र दुनिँया देखेको होला, बढि तार्किक र व्यवाहारिक सक्षमता होला ।

All smiles, Baburam Bhattarai.

All smiles, Baburam Bhattarai.

यति सब हुँदा हुँदै पनि हामीलाई अहिले पनि रुकमाङ्गद कटुवाल वा ज्ञानेन्द्र शाह, वा बाबुराम-प्रचण्ड नै तर बहुमत वा कार्यकारी राष्ट्रपतीय अधिकार सहित, वा गगन थापा वा रवीन्द्र अधिकारी नआई देश विकास हुँदैन भन्ने लाग्छ। यी सब अप्ठेरो काम नगरी सुख पाउने छोटा बाटाहरुका कल्पना मात्र हुन् । तपाईँको घर, छरछिमके, टोल, संस्था, वा जिल्लाहरुमा समस्या पहिल्याउने, समाधान गर्ने र मूल्याङ्कन गर्ने बारे जबसम्म उचित विधि र चेतनाको विकास हुँदैन, तबसम्म देशमा जोसुकै आएपनि दिगो विकास हुँदैन। त्यसैले पहिले नेताहरु कस्ता चाहिने भन्दा पनि हामीहरु कस्ता बन्ने भन्ने बारे हामी निधो गरौँ । यो गाह्रो बाटो हो, तर बढि दिगो हो, यसले कम्तीमा हाम्रो समाजले चाहेको दार्शनिक, आर्थिक, र राजनीतिक स्वरुप अनि भविष्य कस्तो हो भन्ने बारे बहस चलाएर एक-किसिमको मार्गचित्र निर्धारण गर्छ, साँचो रुपमा समाज निर्माण गर्छ। सबै समाजहरुले यसकिसिमको बहस गरेका छन् कुनै न कुनै समय। युरोपमा रेनेसाँ र इनलाइट्मेन्टबाट यो क्रम शुरु भयो, त्यसैगरी अमेरीकामा त्यहाँको स्वतन्त्रता आन्दोलन र संविधान बन्ने क्रममा भएका बहसहरुले त्यो देशको रुपरेखा कोर्यो। हाम्रोमा जबसम्म यस्तो केहि हुँदैन, हामीलाई आफ्नो बाटो के हो, कता जाने हो, के गर्ने हो भन्ने थाहा हुँदैन, सजिला बाटाहरु सबै निराशामा बदलिने निश्चित नै छन् ।


English version:


Our politicos have failed us- we think they are good for nothing. At least we had some sort of national pride and prestige while the kings were still there. The kings had gone to the world’s best universities, were personal friends with many important figures and leaders from all around the world. They were successful in establishing this country in many fronts. Just until a few years ago, Nepal was in a lot better shape than most Indian states. We were more advanced and developed than comparable land masses like Bhutan, Sikkim, Tibet, Kashmir and Afghanistan. The Kings steered the modern era of Nepal (starting from 1950) and led the country from a state of backwardness to where our citizens had gone to assume important duties around the world. We were successful in earning a lot of goodwill from the international community as well.

Baburam Bhattarai

Baburam Bhattarai (picture: nepalitimes.com)

All our politicos know is to bicker and to damage. They’d prefer situation to go from bad to worse, so that they’d have something to protest and bicker about. This is because they find it easier than actually doing something, constructing and developing the society. It’s easier for them to do what they are capable of. We had immense opportunities in the period after 1990, but by not establishing proper values and institutionalizing the system, they let it be wasted. Even now, a lot of things could be done, but Nepal has been subjected to similar practices. Sometimes I wonder if our destiny is tied around the 1960 coup and if that is what we’ll always be circling around.

Nepal was forced into a very long war which has no justification and cost us a great deal (recently, there have been new revelations to substantiate a long-held suspicion in Nepal that Maoist war was in large part sponsored by the Indian government). After all, what did the people not sacrifice for the sake of the personal frustrations and aspirations (of power) of a few men like Baburam Bhattarai? Bhattarai was the loved son of the people, and the darling boy of our media- because he was good in studies and they thought he was able but deprived of opportunities to implement his ideas. For his and their sake, we let go Nepal’s oldest institutions, democracy, civil rights and economic development. I wonder what was that for. These days, when I see Bhattarai’s sly and famous closed-mouth smile on television, I feel deeply sorry for the people of our country.

Before we go through another cycle of 1960 coup, there are issues that require us to do some soul-searching. Why are we having to go through all this? I think it is because of some fundamental problems with our understanding of things and aspirations out of what we have. We expect all our solutions to incarnate in the form of a Prime Minister, President or a king. Similarly, the failed people who are our politicos, also harbor this misconception that they’ll be able to do everything once they get to power. After all, we are the only society in the world to call movie actors as “heroes.” A society that desperately waits for a hero to come and rescue it is destined to be like ours.

Prachanda to Stalin (picture: nepalitimes.com)

Prachanda to Stalin (picture: nepalitimes.com)

That’s why I think we need to study some basic values and principles starting from the school itself. We need to inculcate a minimum level of civic sense, social understanding, and the basic skills of evaluating problems, history and coming up with solutions. Children in schools should be given artificial problems related to the society and nation, and be made to come up with solutions for them by discussing, working in groups and constructing proper arguments. It is high time we introduce this kind of teaching and understanding in our society.

Many well established thinkers of our society put stupid and illogical arguments in public space and media, so stupid that I think they may sound ridiculous to even some kids in civilized societies. I have heard more philosophical and serious things in some foreign songs and movie dialogs. I wonder if an average musical band has more understanding of the world, of logic, and practical insights than some of our leaders who are lauded for being intellectual.

Despite this, we’re still waiting for some Rukmangat Katwal, Gyanendra Shah, or Baburam-Prachanda with executive presidential powers, or Gagan Thapa or Rabindra Adhikari to come along and rescue us from the present quagmire. These are all short-cuts to success requiring little work from our side. Unfortunately, the road to success is not always straight; a long and winding road may be more challenging, but the success it provides at the end will be more sustainable and long lasting. Unless we develop proper methods and institutions to come up with solutions at the level of our homes, neighborhood, organizations or districts, expecting rapid development at a national level is a bit too far-fetched. 

Baburam Bhattarai

Baburam Bhattarai (picture: nepalitimes.com)


So, when we discuss about the kind of leaders we want, let us also discuss what kind of society we want, and what kinds of citizens we want to be. This way, we’ll launch a discussion about the kind of philosophical, economic and political structure and future we want for ourselves and help carve a road-map for our society. This is true society building, nation building. All advanced societies have been through it. There were Renaissance and Enlightenment in Europe and after its civil war, the USA established a set of values on constitution and civil liberties. Until we are ready to take a similar route and be sure of ourselves by debating what is it that we want, what road and future we need, all short but easy routes are bound to give us more failure.